Pinelake Church's is made up of 5 Mississippi campuses with the main campus located in Brandon, Mississippi. The founders, Mike and Lori Salley along with Brittany Wheeler attend this church, so it's been fun to host 2 teams back to back from their home church.
Unfortunately, team #2 was delayed because of weather and flight issues. Their trip was shorter than expected, but that didn't stop them from making a huge impact in many lives. They arrived at the base the first night at 6 am (after having little sleep as they traveled for over a day), slept until 9am and got up ready to tackle the day. Their hearts of service and willingness to get their hands dirty - literally at times, was inspiring. Thank you Pinelake (amazing people) for all you have done these past several weeks at SMI Uganda. We can't wait for our next Pinelake team trip in July
The elderly are often forgotten and left to care for themselves. Because of this, it makes it even more special when we go out to visit them. Sometimes teams are hesitant to go and visit the elderly - not because they don't care, but because they aren't sure what to say or how to relate to this generation. We are always amazed by how much inspiration and perspective we come away with after our visits with the elderly.
On this particular visit with Jaja (grandmother) Florence, we wanted to help her add an iron roof to her outdoor cooking area. Some people who live in the rural areas of Uganda cook outside over wood or charcoal. If it rains, that means no fire which means no heated food or water. After the roof was fixed, she expressed how thankful she was that the rain would no longer hinder her from preparing meals. She kept saying "you have saved me from the rains. You know, rain would hinder me from preparing meals but now I will be able to cook without challenges because you have covered my kitchen with iron sheets from top to bottom."
Part of the team also loved on an elderly jaja by planting a garden for her. She was so thankful that we saved her from a long night of back pain and aching knees.
AND... the team did medical checkups for the elderly. Again, this act of service helps not only with the healthcare of the patient, but saves them from walking miles to our clinic.
Our H.E.R.O (Helping Elderly... Relieving Oppression) program brings emotional, spiritual, and physical support to the elderly who are struggling. Without YOU this would not be possible. THANK YOU!
Do you love elderly people? Interested in helping to love on some of them through Show Mercy? You can become a monthly partner by clicking here.
Elementary School Ministry
The children LOVE when teams come to visit because it gives them the chance to have fun. They love to dance around, sing songs, and spend time with the team. Ever since the schools closed due to covid, the children have been so bored. They are SO excited now that schools are opening back up and they have visitors!
Our Bridge Program (one on one tutoring) provides extra assistance to children who are struggling to learn in school. It's been fun to see these kids grow in their confidence each day. Since they struggle to learn or simply are behind because they couldn't afford to attend school, they tend to believe they are inadequate, which we know isn't true.
The children enjoyed the love and attention from Kimmy and Caitlin. You just never know what one word of encouragement can do. When children know you believe in their potential, they eventually begin to believe it too.
A HUGE shoutout to Kimmy and Caitlin for taking the time to help teach these children. Your love and care was evident. You are truly making a difference.
You become what you hang out with, which is why WE LOVE TO gather the youth to hang out with other AMAZING young people.
Memories were definitely made this day as the team and students danced, laughed and ate a delicious meal.
Do you remember when you were younger? Did you have a good friend group? It is so important for the youth to have a time to socialize together not only with the team but with their peers. Being accepted and encouraged/challenged to pursue God's purpose in our lives is a recipe for success.
Say No to Hunger
It was another fun day at our Saturday gathering. Thanks Pinelake for LIVING ON PURPOSE while reaching out in LOVE to these kiddos. They are missing you already.
This team did an outstanding job of organizing and keeping 124 kids engaged with games, activities and a "theatrical" presentation of David and Goliath. They even had a little competition - tug of war. Guys vs. girls. The girls let the guys win of course!
The kids all walked home afterwards with happy hearts and refreshed souls. It's been a long past season of isolation, so this gathering was so needed.
Click here for more pictures!